RFID allows warehouse operators to conduct more inventory transactions with the same or less labor input. This allows for improved inventory visibility and optimization. However, like everything else in life, it comes at a cost. If you’re planning to implement RFID, it should be part of a long-term vision that takes advantage of the improved inventory transparency and accompanied with a commitment to the resources necessary for its successful implementation.
You want me to forever question your moral compass? Tell me you don’t mind doing year-end inventory. Tell me that the thought of 12-hour days endlessly counting and re-counting doesn’t send a cold shiver down your spine, and I’ll show you a person who has lost all ability to tell the truth, even to themselves! In a time where no one can agree on anything, it’s nice that at least those of us who make our living making things can be united on one thing: we all share a deep and abiding hatred for the annual year-end inventory.
This article covers the two main plant numbering systems that together form the framework on which all maintenance programmes are based and describes the value that can be created by integrating these identification systems. These two systems are: Equipment Numbers, or more accurately, Equipment Location Numbers Stock-Keeping Unit (SKU) numbers or, preferably, Material Catalogue Numbers. A third, less critical but still important numbering system for Stores location (or “bin”) numbers, is also included.
When the time comes to specify replacements for mechanical power transmission couplings, it’s human nature to take the easy path…simply find something similar (if not identical) to the coupling that failed, maybe apply a few oversizing fudge factors just to be conservative. Too often, however, this practice only invites a repeat failure…or more costly system damage.
Proper planning and control of spare parts inventory is a critical component of an effective asset management program. If the right parts are not on hand when needed for routine maintenance or repairs, downtime is prolonged. If too many parts are on hand, the enterprise absorbs excessive costs and the overhead of carrying the inventory.
A custom blueprint for streamlining internal processes, Lean has helped to increase production at many plants. Except, all too often, these plants don’t enjoy the maximum return on their investment. This is because managers often limit their Lean implementations to production-related processes. Such applications provide only a fraction of the benefit Lean is designed to offer and often deprive plants of achieving the true potential for growth and development.